In a stunning and resounding victory, Donald J Trump defeated Hillary Rodham Clinton last night to become the 45th President of the United States, catching the financial markets off guard and sending global indexes plunging lower.
Dow futures initially fell as much as 800 points in after-hours trading, but had recovered more than half of those losses by Wednesday morning as dawn began to break on the east coast of the United States. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq index futures both triggered their circuit breakers and were halted after hitting their limit down.
It was an outcome that few saw coming. Nearly all pundits and pollsters predicted a Clinton win, many of them by a substantial margin. But in the end, Trump was able to galvanize the support of a huge group of disenfranchised U.S. workers and retirees that have largely been passed over by the economic recovery since the financial crisis of 2008-2009.
Now investors must turn their attention to their portfolios, and try to come up with a plan for the next four years of a Trump presidency. The general consensus is that Trump will be friendly towards Financials, Energy, Biotech, Precious Metals, and Industrials/Defense.
While Clinton was largely seen as a conventional and predictable Washington insider, Trump is nothing if not a wildcard. No one can claim to know exactly what his true plans for the country are — perhaps not even himself — so investors can at the very least expect continued volatility through the end of the year.
The SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF (NYSE:DIA) fell $2.84 (-1.55%) to $180.54 per share in premarket trading Wednesday. Prior to the election outcome, the only ETF tied to the DJIA had gained 5.4% year-to-date.